Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

June 13, 2013

The Internship struggles to reclaim past gold

Andy Stuckey, Ryan Maddux
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn costar in the buddy comedy The Internship (PG-13).

In the film they play a couple of washed-up salesmen that maneuver their way into the highly competitive internship program at Google. If their team of outcasts wins the competition, they secure jobs at the highly successful Dot-Com company. Shawn Levy directs.

Ryan: The re-teaming of Vaughn and Wilson obviously reminds viewers of the uber-successful classic comedy of the aughts, Wedding Crashers. It’s abundantly clear that they (as well as the filmmakers) are trying to recapture that magic. And that’s evident by basically using the same formula of Wedding Crashers — that of Vaughn and Wilson being dropped in a foreign environment and using their charm to poppycock their way out of the hostile situation. While Wedding Crashers succeeded on all levels, The Internship falls short in comparison. It has a few laughs and it’s a harmless movie, but it’s certainly not a movie one needs to rush out and view.

Andy: The Internship opens with Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson poorly singing along with the ‘90s Alanis Morissette hit “Ironic.” It turns out that this sums up the entire movie — something familiar from a recently bygone era that is poorly executed. You know what you are getting, but it is stale and a little disappointing. Vaughn and Wilson are doing their tired schtick, which still entertains at times, but ultimately does not carry a movie very well.

Ryan: Now I understand that, by design, The Internship was never going to be a hard-hitting expose on dealing with current economic hardships, but there’s really only one scene in the movie that dates this film to our 2013 reality. For all intents and purposes, this movie could have existed in 2006 and nobody would have known any different. And it’s this lack of immediacy that also prevents The Internship from being a relevant comedy.

Andy: The Internship ends up being a glorified summer camp movie. Teams of people have a series of competitive tasks that culminates with a winner. This format has some inherent benefits, but it mostly exposes the lack of inventiveness in the movie. For the bright spots the movie does offer (a well placed supporting role by Josh Gad), it brings them down with questionable choices (do we really need to see Quiddache?).

Ryan: I’ll always like Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson. I admire them and they have made plenty of movies that I enjoy, but I’m way past the point of giving them the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their movies — especially their comedic endeavors.

Wilson always dabbles in the indie-film world so his stock is hardly ever at rock bottom, but Vaughn is in a cinematic slump. His fast-talking screen persona is still entertaining but it can’t carry a film anymore.

The Internship tries to recapture the previous screen magic of the pairing of Vaughn and Wilson, and the results are not great.

Final grade: C